Odisha extends deadline for Janibili water project to Feb’2020

Berhampur: Odisha government has extended the deadline for completion of the Rs 490 crore Janibili water supply project here to February next year, an official said on Thursday.

The state government had earlier fixed November, 2018 as the deadline for completion of the long awaited project.

“The executing company had sought extension of time and the government has fixed the deadline for completion of the project with water connection to households by February, 2020,” said Executive Engineer of the project, Sitaram Panda.

Besides cyclones such as ‘Titli’ and ‘Fani’ and general elections in the state, the project is taking more time due to the delay in getting clearance from the National Highway Authority of India for laying of pipes, he said.

Panda said the work of the project is now going on in full swing. “We have asked the company to complete the project and ensure supply of water to every household in the city by the end of the current year,” he added.

Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik had inaugurated the project, which aimed to solve the nagging water problem of Berhampur, on March 3 this year, before the general elections.

The project involves drawing water from the Janibili diversion weir, about 55-km from here through underground pipeline and setting up of a 60 million litre per day (mld) capacity treatment plant at Jagadalapur on the outskirt of the city.

The project also includes construction of 17 underground and 10 overhead tanks and laying of 232-km new pipelines in uncovered areas in Berhampur and its adjoining areas.

While 90 per cent work of the treatment plant has been completed, 170-km out of 232-km long pipeline has been laid in the town. Similarly two overhead and eight underground tanks have been completed so far, Panda said.

Out of 25,000 households, the pipe water has been connected to 22,300 households so far. ‘We have given a target to the company to ensure water supply to each household in the city by the end of December this year,” he said.

In a recent meeting to review the progress of the project, Berhampur MP Chandra Sekhar Sahu has asked the executing company to repair the roads, which were damaged for lying of the new pipes and to make household connections.

Opposition BJP and Congress have criticised the government for the project getting delayed while several areas of the city were hit by acute drinking water scarcity.